Our unhealthy addiction to health insurance: A direct primary care doctor’s opinion

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Our unhealthy addiction to health insurance: A direct primary care doctor’s opinion

By JEFFREY GOLD, M.D. Whenever I give a talk about healthcare, I ask the audience, “What is the worst addiction problem we have in the United States?” The answers are typically the same and all are good guesses – alcohol, tobacco, opiates, and sugar are most frequently cited. I agree these are all terrible addictions […]

Why U.S. spends so much on health care: Learn from world comparisons: American Medical Association

Filed Under: Costs, Patients

Why U.S. spends so much on health care: Learn from world comparisons: American Medical Association

“The U.S. spends more on health care than any other country in the world, and the gap between American spending and that of comparable nations isn’t particularly close,” according to a keynote speech to the American Medical Association by Ashish K. Jha, MD, MPH, director of the Harvard Global Health Institute. The .pdf of his […]

How much do Sovaldi, Mavyret and Harvoni cost? $84 per patient, $25,757 per patient or $94,500 per patient?

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

How much do Sovaldi, Mavyret and Harvoni cost? $84 per patient, $25,757 per patient or $94,500 per patient?

“Several states have made alliances with pharma companies to eradicate hepatitis C infections,” Mark Terry writes over at BioSpace. “One of the more recent was between AbbVie and the state of Washington. Another is with Louisiana and Gilead Sciences’ subsidiary Asegua Therapeutics. However, partly because the bidding for these contracts remain confidential, critics are questioning […]

How much does a brain MRI cost, or the triple whammy: Co-insurance, high deductible and a sick kid

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

How much does a brain MRI cost, or the triple whammy: Co-insurance, high deductible and a sick kid

The community member’s report was enough to make you cry. The biggest problem that leaped out at us: A 50 percent co-insurance stipulation in her insurance plan. For an MRI of the brain with and without dye, CPT code 70553, at Virtua Voorhees, these were the prices: CHARGED: 9973.43 INSURED: 2460.0 PAID: 2460.0 Her comment: […]

Costs of Methotrexate, TB test and Humira for rheumatoid arthritis: New year, new insurance

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Costs of Methotrexate, TB test and Humira for rheumatoid arthritis: New year, new insurance

She sent in several blood tests with substantial charges from the Mayo Clinic health system, with insurance via an employer. One was a basic metabolic panel, for which she was charged $138, and asked to pay $105 after the insurer’s writedown. She had a TB test too, for $104. She commented: “on top of this […]

Free or discounted care is available at some hospitals, but they don’t make it easy: The Washington Post

Filed Under: Costs, Patients

Free or discounted care is available at some hospitals, but they don’t make it easy: The Washington Post

“When Ashley Pintos went to the emergency room of St. Joseph Medical Center in Tacoma, Wash., with a sharp pain in her abdomen and no insurance, a representative demanded a $500 deposit before treating her,” Jordan Rau writes in The Washington Post. “‘She said, “Do you have $200?” I said no,’ recalled Pintos, who then […]

New York State makes policy changes in response to our Medical Price Roulette reporting

New York State makes policy changes in response to our Medical Price Roulette reporting

The New York State superintendent of financial services, Linda A. Lacewell, announced that the state Department of Financial Services (DFS) has proposed an amendment to a regulation on New York’s Out of Network Law to protect New Yorkers further from surprise medical bills. In a statement in a press release, Lacewell said she was taking […]

Who gets paid what: The ABC’s of health care pricing

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Who gets paid what: The ABC’s of health care pricing

Pricing is byzantine in the U.S. health care system. For any given procedure or item at any given hospital or clinic, there may be a dozen prices or more. Why? We have what’s called a third-party payer system — many bills are paid not by the patient (the recipient of the service or medication) but […]

We’re live with our CBS News partnership

We’re live with our CBS News partnership

We’ve launched a new partnership with CBS News, bringing transparency to the health care marketplace by telling people what stuff costs, under the name “Medical Price Roulette.” Here’s the first story from Anna Werner, national consumer investigative correspondent at CBS This Morning.  She interviewed Frank Esposito, who faced close to $700,000 in medical costs after […]

Young adults take ‘risky’ actions to save on health care costs: Forbes

Young adults take ‘risky’ actions to save on health care costs:  Forbes

“Much of the news about health care costs focuses on the assets required to cover health care costs in retirement,” Janet Berry-Johnson writes at Forbes. “HealthView Services 2018 Retirement Healthcare Costs Data Report estimates that a 65-year-old couple in good health will need $363,946 to pay for health-care costs for the remainder of their lives, […]